January 20, 2017

TOKYO (AP) Japan's Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida says it is ''unacceptable'' that the official website for the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics refers to disputed isles in the Sea of Japan under the South Korean name ''Dokdo.''

The website introduces the islets by saying, ''Dokdo holds a special place in the hearts of Koreans as they hold pride in defending Korea's easternmost reached territory.''

Japan calls the islets Takeshima and says it has historical evidence backing its sovereignty since at least the 17th century. South Korea has countered that it has far older historical evidence that the islets it calls Dokdo are theirs.

The website also refers to the waters which Japan calls Sea of Japan under the South Korean name, ''East Sea.''

''It is unacceptable in light of our country's stance over the sovereignty of Takeshima and over the naming of the Sea of Japan,'' Kshida said. ''It goes against the Olympic Charter which calls for mutual understanding and opposes the political use of sports.''

The office of Lee Hee-beom, head of the Pyeongchang organizing committee, said Friday that ''it's not even worth making a response'' to the Japanese comments, arguing that the islets are undoubtedly South Korean territory.

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